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Taxis and private hire vehicles

The council has adopted a new Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Licensing Policy which is effective from 1 September 2022.

The adoption of the new policy was prompted by the publication by the Government of the Statutory Taxi and Private Hire Vehicle Standards, which provide instructive guidance to licensing authorities on how they should use their taxi and private hire licensing powers to protect children and vulnerable individuals over the age of 18 from harm when using these services. 

Download a copy of the new policy from Worcestershire regulatory services


Taxis (hackney carriage) and private hire vehicles, drivers, and their booking offices must all be licensed separately. Find the right licences for you below.

Hackney Carriage or Private Hire vehicle?

The main difference between a Private Hire vehicle and a Hackney Carriage (taxi) is that a Private Hire vehicle can only be used on set pre-booked journeys, arranged through a Private Hire Operator. This means that when it is working the driver cannot go to a Taxi Rank and cannot pick up a passenger off the street unless it is a pre-booked fare. Hackney Carriages can be hailed (‘flagged down’) directly from the street or hired from taxi ranks within the district.

All Hackney Carriages (taxis) are required to display an illuminated Taxi sign. On licensed cars the sign is fitted to the roof and the word ‘taxi’ is visible from the front. During hours of darkness all taxi signs are illuminated when the vehicles are available for hire.

Private Hire vehicles are not permitted to display any sign on the roof or have the word ‘taxi’ anywhere on the vehicle.

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